Monday, January 9, 2017 – 3:52 p.m.
Tate Moore has been an occasional participant in Oxtales productions over the years.
Detectives Armstrong and Murphy interviewed him at the Yoknapatawpha County Sheriff's Department.
- Detective T. Armstrong
- Detective S. Murphy
- Tate Moore
Detective Murphy: Thanks for coming in. Nice to see you again. I hope you can help us out.
Tate Moore: I'll be glad to do what I can.
Detective Murphy: Okay, just for the record, would you please state your name and address?
Tate Moore: My name is Tate Moore, and I live at 603 Tyler, and that's right here in Oxford.
Detective Murphy: And where are you employed?
Tate Moore: Mainly, I work with my band, the Kudzu Kings, and I work at Square Pizza. Sometimes I pick up a shift groundskeeping at Rowan Oak when they need me.
Detective Murphy: Have you ever worked with the theater group Oxtales?
Tate Moore: Sure.
Detective Armstrong: How have you been involved with them?
Tate Moore: Just small parts here and there. Nothing major.
Detective Murphy: How did you hook up with the group?
Tate Moore: Oxford's a small town, you know? ‘Specially the arts scene. So I met Andrea Stover somewhere along the line, and she asked me to help out.
Detective Armstrong: What was the nature of your relationship with Andrea?
Tate Moore: Oh, we were just buddies. She could match any man drink for drink.
Detective Murphy: Do you know if Andrea was seeing anyone in the group?
Tate Moore: Well, she used to go out with Frank Tuttle, back before she went in. I don't know if there was anybody else.
Detective Murphy: Did that relationship cause any problems in the group?
Tate Moore: Not really. Least not that I could see, I wasn't around them that much. But I know Sheila Love had the hots for Frank, and she kind of pined away for him while he was seeing Andrea. They got together while Andrea was away.
Detective Murphy: How did Andrea get along with the different members of Oxtales?
Tate Moore: Well, I mean, I guess she got along all right. She's pretty damn demanding, though. She'd butt heads a couple times with Dale King, and sometimes she'd want us to rewrite stuff. Ethan and I would get mad at her, but other than that, pretty much everybody got along with her, I guess.
Detective Murphy: How was your relationship with Andrea?
Tate Moore: In the group or outside?
Detective Murphy: When you were working with Oxtales.
Tate Moore: Oh, okay. We'll we got along all right. At work, she could be pretty dogmatic. Sometimes it would start to get on my nerves, but I would remind myself that I was just sort of a visitor. Just temporary help. It's a whole lot easier to put up with somebody when you don't have to deal with them all the time.
Detective Armstrong: What about outside Oxtales? Your personal relationship with Andrea.
Tate Moore: We got along pretty good. She was a lot of fun. When we were just hanging out, her off-the-wall opinions were fun. The group would get in some kinds of arguments. Always fun arguments. Debates. If you had to work for her, the opinions could be a bit much, but if you were hanging out, they were a lot of fun.
Detective Armstrong: Did you two ever get together?
Tate Moore: We enjoyed each other's company from time to time, but never anything serious. Neither one of us wanted that.
Detective Murphy: Were you involved in the “Snopes” production?
Tate Moore: Yeah. I just had a small part, though. I mean, it wasn't anything. I just— I did a little stage work.
Detective Armstrong: You weren't prosecuted for “Snopes.” What did you think of Andrea's refusal to plea bargain?
Tate Moore: I thought it was a little extreme, but I can't say I was surprised. Those opinions, remember? She wasn't about to bow down to the establishment.
Detective Murphy: What did you think about all the controversy over that play? All the press coverage and the community uproar.
Tate Moore: Well, I personally thought it was stupid. I mean, all the sexy stuff was not— it wasn't that bad. It was just a play, and I mean, you could just as well attack the cable company for stuff that they do that's way worse than what was going on there. But that's kind of the way it is here.
Detective Armstrong: What do you mean?
Tate Moore: Oxford's a weird place. It seems really artsy and really liberal and all. But every once in a while, it will snap back and get real conservative real quick. As an artist, it's sometimes hard to know what the boundaries are here.
Detective Armstrong: Is it?
Tate Moore: There's a real good painter works at Ole Miss, and his paintings all sell for thousands of dollars. He's had several exhibitions at the C'est Belle Gallery. Most of his work is of nude women. And everyone just loves ‘em.
Detective Armstrong: But?
Tate Moore: But a buddy of mine, he's a photographer. His work is just as good, but he can't sell a one. He tried to get a booth at the Double Decker Arts Festival, and Claire Windham just flat told him he couldn't participate. Said his work was disgusting. It's no worse than that painter, but they wouldn't let him do nothing. Oxford can be that way.
Detective Murphy: If we could get back to Oxtales, have you participated in any other productions since that one?
Tate Moore: Not too much. I've been really busy with my band and stuff. I did some of the lighting for "Black Boy in the Closet," but I haven't done any acting with them.
Detective Murphy: Do you know anything about the current production?
Tate Moore: Nah. I was going to drop by and watch rehearsal sometime, but I just never got around to it.
Detective Murphy: Do you think the group supports Dale King as director?
Tate Moore: I think so. He's an all right guy, not as uncompromising as Andrea. I've heard that they did really good work while she was away.
Detective Murphy: Who do you think was the better director?
Tate Moore: I can't really say for sure. I never did too much work with them when Dale was leading the show.
Detective Armstrong: Did you know that Andrea had a fear of heights?
Tate Moore: Yeah, we discussed it actually a couple different times. I remember one time we were at my drummer's house, and we were talking about St. Louis for some reason. And we got to talking about the Arch. She said she'd gone and visited it with her family and she wouldn't go up.
Detective Armstrong: Do you have any idea why she would have gone up on the skywalks at Oxford Centre?
Tate Moore: Not really. Some people around town have said that she was thinking of staging a piece there, but I don't know for myself.
Detective Murphy: Do you know how Andrea's life was going for her since she got out of prison?
Tate Moore: I'm not real sure. I hadn't really talked to her since she got back. I've been really busy and all, so I hadn't sat down and had a real conversation with her. I'd seen her a few times at Proud Larry's and stuff, but it was always in a crowd.
Detective Murphy: Do you have any theories about who might have wanted to kill Andrea?
Tate Moore: None at all. I've thought a lot about it, and I guess all those COP people and stuff might be good suspects. But other than that, I can't really think who could've been so worked up they'd want to hurt her.
Detective Murphy: Okay, Tate, you know we've gotta ask this. Where were you on the night of Sunday, January 1st?
Tate Moore: Probably rehearsal and then bed. We had a gig in Arkansas, so I'm sure we were working on some tunes. It's kind of like cramming before exams, you know.
Detective Murphy: Okay, thanks for your time. We'll be in touch if we need anything else.
Interview ends 4:26 p.m.